CHAPTER FIVE––LAND AND ENVIRONMENT
60. (1) Land in Kenya shall be held, used and managed in a
manner that is equitable, efficient, productive and sustainable, and in
Principles of land
Constitution of Kenya 42 [Rev. 2010
accordance with the following principles—
(a) equitable access to land;
(b) security of land rights;
(c) sustainable and productive management of land
(d) transparent and cost effective administration of land;
(e) sound conservation and protection of ecologically sensitive
(f) elimination of gender discrimination in law, customs and
practices related to land and property in land; and
(g) encouragement of communities to settle land disputes
through recognised local community initiatives consistent
with this Constitution.
(2) These principles shall be implemented through a national land
policy developed and reviewed regularly by the national government
and through legislation.
61. (1) All land in Kenya belongs to the people of Kenya
collectively as a nation, as communities and as individuals.
(2) Land in Kenya is classified as public, community or private.
62. (1) Public land is—
(a) land which at the effective date was unalienated government
land as defined by an Act of Parliament in force at the
(b) land lawfully held, used or occupied by any State organ,
except any such land that is occupied by the State organ as
lessee under a private lease;
(c) land transferred to the State by way of sale, reversion or
(d) land in respect of which no individual or community
ownership can be established by any legal process;
(e) land in respect of which no heir can be identified by any
Classification of land.
Constitution of Kenya 43 Rev. 2010]
(f) all minerals and mineral oils as defined by law;
(g) government forests other than forests to which Article 63 (2)
(d) (i) applies, government game reserves, water catchment
areas, national parks, government animal sanctuaries, and
specially protected areas;
(h) all roads and thoroughfares provided for by an Act of
(i) all rivers, lakes and other water bodies as defined by an Act
(j) the territorial sea, the exclusive economic zone and the sea
(k) the continental shelf;
(l) all land between the high and low water marks;
(m) any land not classified as private or community land under
this Constitution; and
(n) any other land declared to be public land by an Act of
(i) in force at the effective date; or
(ii) enacted after the effective date.
(2) Public land shall vest in and be held by a county government
in trust for the people resident in the county, and shall be administered
on their behalf by the National Land Commission, if it is classified
(a) clause (1) (a), (c), (d) or (e); and
(b) clause (1) (b), other than land held, used or occupied by a
national State organ.
(3) Public land classified under clause (1) (f) to (m) shall vest
in and be held by the national government in trust for the people of
Kenya and shall be administered on their behalf by the National Land
Constitution of Kenya 44 [Rev. 2010
(4) Public land shall not be disposed of or otherwise used except
in terms of an Act of Parliament specifying the nature and terms of that
disposal or use.
63. (1) Community land shall vest in and be held by communities
identified on the basis of ethnicity, culture or similar community of
(2) Community land consists of—
(a) land lawfully registered in the name of group representatives
under the provisions of any law;
(b) land lawfully transferred to a specific community by any
process of law;
(c) any other land declared to be community land by an Act of
(d) land that is—
(i) lawfully held, managed or used by specific communities
as community forests, grazing areas or shrines;
(ii) ancestral lands and lands traditionally occupied by
hunter-gatherer communities; or
(iii) lawfully held as trust land by the county governments,
but not including any public land held in trust by the county
government under Article 62 (2).
(3) Any unregistered community land shall be held in trust by
county governments on behalf of the communities for which it is
(4) Community land shall not be disposed of or otherwise used
except in terms of legislation specifying the nature and extent of the
rights of members of each community individually and collectively.
(5) Parliament shall enact legislation to give effect to this
64. Private land consists of —
(a) registered land held by any person under any freehold
Constitution of Kenya 45 Rev. 2010]
(b) land held by any person under leasehold tenure; and
(c) any other land declared private land under an Act of
65. (1) A person who is not a citizen may hold land on the basis
of leasehold tenure only, and any such lease, however granted, shall
not exceed ninety-nine years.
(2) If a provision of any agreement, deed, conveyance or document
of whatever nature purports to confer on a person who is not a citizen an
interest in land greater than a ninety-nine year lease, the provision shall
be regarded as conferring on the person a ninety-nine year leasehold
interest, and no more.
(3) For purposes of this Article—
(a) a body corporate shall be regarded as a citizen only if the
body corporate is wholly owned by one or more citizens;
(b) property held in trust shall be regarded as being held by a
citizen only if all of the beneficial interest of the trust is held
by persons who are citizens.
(4) Parliament may enact legislation to make further provision
for the operation of this Article.
66. (1) The State may regulate the use of any land, or any interest
in or right over any land, in the interest of defence, public safety, public
order, public morality, public health, or land use planning.
(2) Parliament shall enact legislation ensuring that investments
in property benefit local communities and their economies.
67. (1) There is established the National Land Commission.
(2) The functions of the National Land Commission are—
(a) to manage public land on behalf of the national and county
(b) to recommend a national land policy to the national
(c) to advise the national government on a comprehensive
Regulation of land
use and property.
Constitution of Kenya 46 [Rev. 2010
programme for the registration of title in land throughout
(d) to conduct research related to land and the use of natural
resources, and make recommendations to appropriate
(e) to initiate investigations, on its own initiative or on a
complaint, into present or historical land injustices, and
recommend appropriate redress;
(f) to encourage the application of traditional dispute resolution
mechanisms in land conflicts;
(g) to assess tax on land and premiums on immovable property
in any area designated by law; and
(h) to monitor and have oversight responsibilities over land use
planning throughout the country.
(3) The National Land Commission may perform any other
functions prescribed by national legislation.
68. Parliament shall—
(a) revise, consolidate and rationalise existing land laws;
(b) revise sectoral land use laws in accordance with the
principles set out in Article 60 (1); and
(c) enact legislation—
(i) to prescribe minimum and maximum land holding acre-
ages in respect of private land;
(ii) to regulate the manner in which any land may be con-
verted from one category to another;
(iii) to regulate the recognition and protection of matrimonial
property and in particular the matrimonial home during
and on the termination of marriage;
(iv) to protect, conserve and provide access to all public
(v) to enable the review of all grants or dispositions of public
land to establish their propriety or legality;
Legislation on land.
Constitution of Kenya 47 Rev. 2010]
(vi) to protect the dependants of deceased persons holding
interests in any land, including the interests of spouses
in actual occupation of land; and
(vii) to provide for any other matter necessary to give effect
to the provisions of this Chapter.
Part 2—environment and natural resources
69. (1) The State shall—
(a) ensure sustainable exploitation, utilisation, management and
conservation of the environment and natural resources, and
ensure the equitable sharing of the accruing benefits;
(b) work to achieve and maintain a tree cover of at least ten per
cent of the land area of Kenya;
(c) protect and enhance intellectual property in, and indigenous
knowledge of, biodiversity and the genetic resources of the
(d) encourage public participation in the management,
protection and conservation of the environment;
(e) protect genetic resources and biological diversity;
(f) establish systems of environmental impact assessment,
environmental audit and monitoring of the environment;
(g) eliminate processes and activities that are likely to endanger
the environment; and
(h) utilise the environment and natural resources for the benefit
of the people of Kenya.
(2) Every person has a duty to cooperate with State organs and
other persons to protect and conserve the environment and ensure
ecologically sustainable development and use of natural resources.
70. (1) If a person alleges that a right to a clean and healthy
environment recognised and protected under Article 42 has been, is
being or is likely to be, denied, violated, infringed or threatened, the
person may apply to a court for redress in addition to any other legal
remedies that are available in respect to the same matter.
Obligations in respect
of the environment.
Constitution of Kenya 48 [Rev. 2010
(2) On application under clause (1), the court may make any order,
or give any directions, it considers appropriate––
(a) to prevent, stop or discontinue any act or omission that is
harmful to the environment;
(b) to compel any public officer to take measures to prevent
or discontinue any act or omission that is harmful to the
(c) to provide compensation for any victim of a violation of the
right to a clean and healthy environment.
(3) For the purposes of this Article, an applicant does not have to
demonstrate that any person has incurred loss or suffered injury.
71. (1) A transaction is subject to ratification by Parliament if
(a) involves the grant of a right or concession by or on behalf
of any person, including the national government, to another
person for the exploitation of any natural resource of Kenya;
(b) is entered into on or after the effective date.
(2) Parliament shall enact legislation providing for the classes of
transactions subject to ratification under clause (1).
72. Parliament shall enact legislation to give full effect to the
provisions of this Part.
CHAPTER SIX––LEADERSHIP AND INTEGRITY
73. (1) Authority assigned to a State officer—
(a) is a public trust to be exercised in a manner that—
(i) is consistent with the purposes and objects of this Con-
(ii) demonstrates respect for the people;
(iii) brings honour to the nation and dignity to the office;
(iv) promotes public confidence in the integrity of the
to natural resources.
to the environment.
Constitution of Kenya 49 Rev. 2010]
(b) vests in the State officer the responsibility to serve the
people, rather than the power to rule them.
(2) The guiding principles of leadership and integrity include—
(a) selection on the basis of personal integrity, competence and
suitability, or election in free and fair elections;
(b) objectivity and impartiality in decision making, and in
ensuring that decisions are not influenced by nepotism,
favouritism, other improper motives or corrupt practices;
(c) selfless service based solely on the public interest,
(i) honesty in the execution of public duties; and
(ii) the declaration of any personal interest that may conflict
with public duties;
(d) accountability to the public for decisions and actions; and
(e) discipline and commitment in service to the people.
74. Before assuming a State office, acting in a State office, or
performing any functions of a State office, a person shall take and
subscribe the oath or affirmation of office, in the manner and form
prescribed by the Third Schedule or under an Act of Parliament.
75. (1) A State officer shall behave, whether in public and official
life, in private life, or in association with other persons, in a manner
(a) any conflict between personal interests and public or official
(b) compromising any public or official interest in favour of a
personal interest; or
(c) demeaning the office the officer holds.
(2) A person who contravenes clause (1), or Article 76, 77 or 78
(a) shall be subject to the applicable disciplinary procedure for
the relevant office; and
Oath of office of
Conduct of State
Constitution of Kenya 50 [Rev. 2010
(b) may, in accordance with the disciplinary procedure referred
to in paragraph (a), be dismissed or otherwise removed from
(3) A person who has been dismissed or otherwise removed from
office for a contravention of the provisions mentioned in clause (2) is
disqualified from holding any other State office.
76. (1) A gift or donation to a State officer on a public or official
occasion is a gift or donation to the Republic and shall be delivered to
the State unless exempted under an Act of Parliament.
(2) A State officer shall not—
(a) maintain a bank account outside Kenya except in accordance
with an Act of Parliament; or
(b) seek or accept a personal loan or benefit in circumstances
that compromise the integrity of the State officer.
77. (1) A full-time State officer shall not participate in any other
(2) Any appointed State officer shall not hold office in a political
(3) A retired State officer who is receiving a pension from public
funds shall not hold more than two concurrent remunerative positions
as chairperson, director or employee of—
(a) a company owned or controlled by the State; or
(b) a State organ.
(4) A retired State officer shall not receive remuneration from
public funds other than as contemplated in clause (3).
78. (1) A person is not eligible for election or appointment to a
State office unless the person is a citizen of Kenya.
(2) A State officer or a member of the defence forces shall not
hold dual citizenship.
(3) Clauses (1) and (2) do not apply to—
(a) judges and members of commissions; or
Financial probity of
activities of State